The Best Leadership Courses for Aspiring Leaders

best leadership courses

Whether you’re starting your very first leadership position or working towards re-energizing your existing team, the best courses for new managers have valuable takeaways. 


Did you know that most managers fail in their first year? According to research by CEB Global, 60% of new managers fail within their first year! 


Why do new managers so often face failure? While the reasons vary, most new managers fail due to lack of training, many employees are promoted to a management role as a reward for great performance.


However, as part of their “reward,” very few new managers receive appropriate training and tools to help them succeed. 


Just like any skill, leadership skills can always be improved. 


Benefits of Leadership Courses

Before we dive into the leadership courses we’d recommend, let’s get one thing out of the way. You don’t have to be a leader to enroll in one of these classes. I’d encourage more junior career people to take leadership courses early in their careers. This gives anyone a better idea of what healthy, good leadership looks like. 


This can be extremely helpful in looking for new roles, discussing career advancement with your boss, finding mentorship, or looking towards leadership roles in the future. 


Many of the best leadership courses teach the following skills, which apply to any career. 


  • Enhanced Communication Skills
  • Improved Decision-Making Abilities
  • Developing Conflict Resolution Skills
  • Building Self-Awareness and Emotional Intelligence:
  • Strategic Thinking and Planning


The following are some of the best-reviewed leadership and management training courses for anyone to take—and list on their resume! 


Coursera’s Leadership and Management Certificate

Offered by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Gies College of Business, this specialized certification course covers leadership, teamwork, and communication skills crucial for new managers. This for-credit program teaches in-demand skills for managing teams and implementing organizational strategy. 


Career Contessa’s The New Manager Manual 

This self-paced course sets any leader up for success in their first (or next)  90 days on the job.  It provides tools to create a New Manager Action Plan.


Use it to maximize your performance, set achievable goals with a clear vision that builds an engaged team, and implement open communication, including feedback loops for long-term inspiration and motivation.


Franklin Covey’s The 6 Critical Practices for Leading a Team 

Leaders at every level make a significant impact on your business and its metrics.


edX’s Becoming a Successful Leader (Inclusive Leadership Training)

This leadership course, provided by CatalystX, explores inclusive 21st-century leadership. Using research and best practices, students learn to practice empowerment, accountability, courage, and humility. 


Career Revolution’s AccelerateME 

Of course, I had to include AccelerateME in this list!


This course is designed to help employees make career decisions and take decisive action daily. It is taught by Career Revolution Master Facilitators and teaches individual contributors how to own their careers. In many cases, employees can complete this course before entering a leadership role. 


AccelerateME Program guides participants through a series of self-discovery based lessons, assessments, small group discussions and assignments that puts them in the driver’s seat of their career.


LinkedIn Learning’s New Manager Foundations

This comprehensive course, led by thought leader and leadership expert Dr. Todd Dewett, guides you through the foundations for success as a new manager. Learn how to establish your identity as a leader, connect with your team, build trust, develop authority, and more.


Employers Association of the Northeast’s Communication Skills for Leaders 

Communication is the cornerstone to success in any leadership role—and I’d argue in any role, period. This communication course, along with most of EANE’s course library, is highly recommended by many Reddit users. It can be completed in person (at select northeast locations) or online. 


Udemy’s Management Skills: New Manager Training in Essential Skills

This management course takes a challenge-based approach to leadership and management. For leaders who struggle with delegating or communicating effectively with team members,  this course provides skills and actionable advice to excel as a manager. 


Harvard Business School Online’s Management Essentials

While this course is one of our pricier recommendations, who wouldn’t jump at a chance to say they “went” to Harvard? I am mostly kidding, but it’s true! This course takes an in-depth approach to help leaders master four vital processes. 


Skillshare’s Agile Team Coaching

Is there a real measure of a great leader? For my money, the best leaders cannot be measured in dollar signs or revenue. Rather, the best leaders inspire and motivate their teams. Best of all, they create new leaders with their inspirational and uplifting approach. This course from Skillshare, led by Will Jeffrey, is designed for leaders whose ultimate goal is to help their team learn and grow. 


FutureLearn’s Leadership Theory: The Basics 

“Develop an in-depth understanding of leadership by assessing your own leadership qualities with the use of different theories.”


If you want to explore the very root of leadership and what separates managers from real leaders, this is the course for you! In partnership with Coventry University, this leadership course explores the theory behind leadership and different leadership styles. 


Alison’s Effective Leadership Skills and Strategies 

This free online course teaches new and aspiring managers how to get ahead and learn the skills and strategies required of an effective leader.


accelerate me course